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Eric

Liquid Yeast

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I am in the process of making my first batch with liquid yeast - I activated it about 24 hours ago, but it has yet to expand/swell.

It may have expanded slightly, but not what I was expecting. Like I said, this is my first time using liquid yeast so I have not frame of reference.

The yeast is german ale and followed the direction as instructed on the package.

Is is ok to use?

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What you're describing is definitely not normal. Aqre you sure you actually broke the smack pack?

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The best that I can tell - there does not feel like there is anything in the pouch anymore other than liquid.

I even tried hitting it a few more times this morning just in case

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Are you talking about a wyeast smackpack?
After smacking, did you keep it in a 75* or so area? Just wanted to make sure you didn't return to the fridge. I've used the smackpack many times and it will usually be plump in 3 hours or so.

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it was between 70 and 75 - stored in the cooler i keep my keg in with a thermometer

yes it is the wyeast smack pack

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Personally, I would not use the yeast. If it hasn't swollen after 24 hours at room temp, then I would assume the yeast is dead. Where did you purchase the yeast from? Can you exchange it?

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ordered it as part of a recipe from mrbeer

I was going to contact customer service tomorrow

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"Eric" post=275308 said:

ordered it as part of a recipe from mrbeer

I was going to contact customer service tomorrow

Now there's your problem. Shipping those poor little cells in this +90F heat is enough to kill most of them before they ever reach your doorstep. I would recommend making a one liter starter to revide whatever cells that have survived the journey and hope for the best. Short of that I'd get some dry yeast locally or liquid yeast if it's been properly stored and handled.

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Yeah agreed, personally every pack I've ever used swelled up within 2-3 hours to the point I thought it might explode.

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"Screwy Brewer" post=275418 said:

"Eric" post=275308 said:

ordered it as part of a recipe from mrbeer

I was going to contact customer service tomorrow

Now there's your problem. Shipping those poor little cells in this +90F heat is enough to kill most of them before they ever reach your doorstep. I would recommend making a one liter starter to revide whatever cells that have survived the journey and hope for the best. Short of that I'd get some dry yeast locally or liquid yeast if it's been properly stored and handled.

Incase you are wondering how to make a yeast starter!
[img size=300x500]http://http://www.beerborg.com/social/ow_userfiles/plugins/base/3-Photo%20Jul%2016,%2010%2021%2044%20PM.jpg

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"Screwy Brewer" post=275418 said:

"Eric" post=275308 said:

ordered it as part of a recipe from mrbeer

I was going to contact customer service tomorrow

Now there's your problem. Shipping those poor little cells in this +90F heat is enough to kill most of them before they ever reach your doorstep. I would recommend making a one liter starter to revide whatever cells that have survived the journey and hope for the best. Short of that I'd get some dry yeast locally or liquid yeast if it's been properly stored and handled.

Incase you are wondering how to make a yeast starter!
[img size=300x500]http://http://www.beerborg.com/social/ow_userfiles/plugins/base/3-Photo%20Jul%2016,%2010%2021%2044%20PM.jpg

DARN DOUBLE POST! AND IT STILL DIDN'T WORK

Try this!
How to make a yeast starter!

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I have never purchased liquid yeast from Mr. Beer, but when they ship it do they pack it in dry ice or some other cooling packaging? or do they just throw it in the box with the other stuff?

+1 on a yeast starter. If there are any yeast cells alive in there and you want to brew faster then waiting for a replacement, you should try a yeast starter.

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"LouieMacGoo" post=275429 said:

"Screwy Brewer" post=275418 said:

"Eric" post=275308 said:

ordered it as part of a recipe from mrbeer

I was going to contact customer service tomorrow

Now there's your problem. Shipping those poor little cells in this +90F heat is enough to kill most of them before they ever reach your doorstep. I would recommend making a one liter starter to revide whatever cells that have survived the journey and hope for the best. Short of that I'd get some dry yeast locally or liquid yeast if it's been properly stored and handled.

Incase you are wondering how to make a yeast starter!
[img size=350]http://www.beerborg.com/social/ow_userfiles/plugins/base/3-Photo Jul 16, 10 21 44 PM.jpg

This is how we doos it.

I acutally start my starter's early morning the day before brewday and pitch them right off the stirplate the next afternoon. I find they're wide awake and really hungry then.

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"KokomoSam" post=275438 said:

I have never purchased liquid yeast from Mr. Beer, but when they ship it do they pack it in dry ice or some other cooling packaging? or do they just throw it in the box with the other stuff?

+1 on a yeast starter. If there are any yeast cells alive in there and you want to brew faster then waiting for a replacement, you should try a yeast starter.

They just throw it in the box. That said, it gets from their warehouse to me in 2 days. So I will order from them if it's in the 60's-70's between their warehouse and my house and the weather man says it will stay that way for a few days. That doesn't do too much damage, nothing a starter doesn't fix.

IE if I was to order one from MoreBeer or Austin Home Brew, it would take 5 days to get here, anything they tossed in there to cool it would be gone after 24 hours and it would spend more time warm. Plus it ships across very hot places. Yuck.

I'll order from Midwest with an ice pack or two, but I still try to only order liquid yeast and have it shipped if it's 70s or lower.

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Another question to ask Mr. Beer is do they store their hops and yeast in refrigerated storage, like an LHBS would? Or better yet what is the average temperature in their warehouse and be sure to know how old the yeast is that they plan to ship. Last summer MB offered us expired liquid yeast for free to us forum members here, just pay for the shipping. I replied that they were doing us brewers a huge diservice by offering mostly dead yeast that would be sure to ruin anyone's beer who was inexperienced enough to actually pitch it without at least attempting to make several starters.

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"mashani" post=275530 said:

IE if I was to order one from MoreBeer or Austin Home Brew, it would take 5 days to get here, anything they tossed in there to cool it would be gone after 24 hours and it would spend more time warm. Plus it ships across very hot places. Yuck.

I'll order from Midwest with an ice pack or two, but I still try to only order liquid yeast and have it shipped if it's 70s or lower.


+1 for Midwest's ice pack and they have several options to choose from in terms of ice packing.

In regard to Austin...be very careful as they are located in Texas...where it's basically tantamount to living on the sun in terms of heat. I would suspect that normal TX summer temps + the loving care afforded by UPS (sniker!) would kill anything...alive OR dead. Austin does have an option to put in a cold pack with their yeast...but that will only last so long.

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I've read this thread and learned much. As someone who lives in a hot climate, I only buy liquid yeast locally but, I rarely use liquid yeast. I've had nearly 100% success when using dry yeast though most of what I use is 05 and 04 for ales and IPA's. I rehydrate always when doing 5 gallon batches and occasionally double pitch. For my LBK size, I normally just aerate, pitch and aerate and it just works.
I only use liquid when an equivalent dry is not available.
So my question to those who DO NOT wash and reuse yeast, what is the reason you use liquid yeast? It's more than twice the cost and I am genuinely curious as to it's benefits. I do not question your choice nor do I think it wrong, just curious as to why go spend more and why take the chance of shipping liquid yeast with the hope there aren't too many dead cells left.

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Louie/Screwy, Great little wall hanging for making a starter. I've always read to use a 1.040 wort, but this clears it up in an easy manner.
Thanks.

Beerlord, I've used Wyeast on recommendation that it will provide an end product flavor closer to the style I'm brewing. Do I know the difference, not just yet, but I'm moving in that direction. It may have been premature on my part to use that yeast without knowing what a brew tastes like using a different yeast. I'm sure the more experienced brewers will chime in to detail other reasons...

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"Beer-lord" post=275560 said:

I've read this thread and learned much. As someone who lives in a hot climate, I only buy liquid yeast locally but, I rarely use liquid yeast. I've had nearly 100% success when using dry yeast though most of what I use is 05 and 04 for ales and IPA's. I rehydrate always when doing 5 gallon batches and occasionally double pitch. For my LBK size, I normally just aerate, pitch and aerate and it just works.
I only use liquid when an equivalent dry is not available.
So my question to those who DO NOT wash and reuse yeast, what is the reason you use liquid yeast? It's more than twice the cost and I am genuinely curious as to it's benefits. I do not question your choice nor do I think it wrong, just curious as to why go spend more and why take the chance of shipping liquid yeast with the hope there aren't too many dead cells left.

BeerLord~

Personally, I'm not as concerned about the cost. I do not wash and/or reuse yeast...frankly, I don't know if I can wrap my head around the process. And even if it's not that difficult, I don't have the set-up or the patience to mess with it. I can barely wrap my head around coming up with the dadgumn recipe. I like to use liquid yeast from 2 standings:

1) My experience has given me better results in terms of flavors and FGs. I like and used to use US-05 exclusively...but never got better than 75 or 76% attenuation. However, recently, I have brewed a couple of batches with WLP001 or WLP007 which have show 80 and 81%. Nothing like expecting a 1.018 FG and getting a 1.012. I'm new enough in the game to enjoy minor nonsense like that.

2) I see greater variations in the yeast styles. For example, I'm not familiar with the dry yeast for a Saison (maybe Safebrew T-58)...but I have varieties with Liquid (Belgian Saison I - WLP565, Belgian Saison II - WLP566, Classic Saison WLP560, Belgian Saison Blend WLP568). Because I have a choice, I was able to identify that the WLP566 is what I wanted out of the Saison I wanted to make.

I'm not saying it's good reasoning...but I'm just trying to make beer I'll enjoy and that's a choice I'm taking.

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"Beer-lord" post=275560 said:

I've read this thread and learned much. As someone who lives in a hot climate, I only buy liquid yeast locally but, I rarely use liquid yeast. I've had nearly 100% success when using dry yeast though most of what I use is 05 and 04 for ales and IPA's. I rehydrate always when doing 5 gallon batches and occasionally double pitch. For my LBK size, I normally just aerate, pitch and aerate and it just works.
I only use liquid when an equivalent dry is not available.
So my question to those who DO NOT wash and reuse yeast, what is the reason you use liquid yeast? It's more than twice the cost and I am genuinely curious as to it's benefits. I do not question your choice nor do I think it wrong, just curious as to why go spend more and why take the chance of shipping liquid yeast with the hope there aren't too many dead cells left.

Beer-lord - I'm with you on using dry yeast. I stock US-05, S-04 and Nottingham - these are the yeasts I tend to use the most, and at about $3 a pop, I don't feel the need to harvest and reuse them. I only use liquid yeast if making a style that specifically calls for something not available in dry form, like Hefeweizen, Kolsch, or Belgians.

I only buy yeast locally, and always check the expiration date. I never buy liquid yeast older than 1 month - the viability drops off drastically after that, and almost always make a nice big starter on a stirplate with it.

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Just as an aside, I've ben rebrewing my favorite recipes and the only difference is that I been changing up the yeast I pitch to ferment them. I really can tell the difference in the flavor and taste produced by the different strains.

I brew a lot, a real lot, and reusing my yeast strains has provided me with a reliable supply of yeast and saved me at least $11-$22.00 a batch which in turn has allowed me to buy a new brew pot, pre-chiller ect. All of which have made my brewday shorter, easier and improved the beer's flavors. I love this hobby.

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"Beer-lord" post=275560 said:


I only use liquid when an equivalent dry is not available.
So my question to those who DO NOT wash and reuse yeast, what is the reason you use liquid yeast? It's more than twice the cost and I am genuinely curious as to it's benefits. I do not question your choice nor do I think it wrong, just curious as to why go spend more and why take the chance of shipping liquid yeast with the hope there aren't too many dead cells left.

I still use both dry and liquid yeast, but have been leaning towards liquid yeast. I have not reused yeast up to this point, but I will yeast ranch the next time I am getting to brew. My preference for liquid yeast started from watching some older episodes of some Basic Brewing videos dealing with a different malt base experiments. I will try to post links to the videos below. In order to conduct the experiment they had to switch to liquid yeast because without hops the dry yeast and malt extract would be come infected. What I took from this is that with dry yeast there will be some amount of contamination that is usually stopped by the astringent nature of hops. However, liquid yeast is "pure" enough to not have this problem. Again this was discovered in beer with no hops and I would never do that, but learning that liquid yeast is much "cleaner" and "pure" and that dry carry's some wild yeast with it made me really question the dry yeast. Now that is just what I took away from the videos and might be colored by bias. Watch them for your self. However, for me I will use liquid yeast with low hop beers (mild, some summer beers, fruit beers, etc...)

May 15, 2008 - Base Malt Experiment
May 28, 2008 - Base Malt Experiment II
August 8, 2008 - Base Malt Experiment III


Also I tend to think my beer made with liquid yeast taste better, but knowing what I know (or what I believe) I am not sure if that is bias or not.

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"KokomoSam" post=275582 said:

What I took from this is that with dry yeast there will be some amount of contamination that is usually stopped by the astringent nature of hops. However, liquid yeast is "pure" enough to not have this problem.

From what I've been reading, this is an "old wives tale" - this may have been the case in the past; however, modern dry yeasts are as pure as liquid cultures.

Here's what Northern Brewer has to say on the subject (emphasis is mine):

Dry yeast and liquid yeast both have their advantages and disadvantages. Selecting yeast depends on your brewing plans and needs. It used to be that dry yeast was inferior to liquid yeast, and some older brewing books still report this information. This is absolutely not the case anymore. Dry yeast is sterile, strain-pure, and highly capable of producing great beer. Because it is dried, the shelf life is often a year or more and it is much more tolerant of warm storage or shipping conditions than liquid yeast. Dry yeast is also packaged with nutrient reserves and is ready to directly pitch without a yeast starter. For high gravity fermentations, more than one pack of dry yeast should be used. Yeast starters are not optimal for dry yeast because they can use up the nutrient reserves of the yeast. The downside to dry yeast is that not all strains can survive the production process, so there are far fewer yeast strains available for beer brewing (there is an excellent selection of dry strains for wine and mead making, however).

The range of available strains is the greatest benefit of liquid yeast. Any strain can be collected and cultured for use by homebrewers. However, because liquid yeast is a live culture, it is usually more expensive and is much more perishable. Yeast shipped by mail order usually has a practical shelf life of 3 months (sometimes longer) and can be adversely affected or destroyed by temperatures above 90 F. There are also fewer cells per pack than dry yeast, so when making a beer with a gravity above 1.060 (or when making any lager) the yeast should ideally be “grown” by making a yeast starter before brewing day. Using multiple packs of liquid yeast can also accomplish this same goal.

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I appreciate the replies......just makes this forum such a great place to learn.
In the last 3 months, I've used liquid yeasts 3 times. Once with no starter....that took more than 30 hours to start but it was a pretty big beer for the most part.
The other 2 had starters and did it's business quickly but I can't say I've seen a better attenuation except maybe in one recent batch.
I'm not a cheapskate but when I can, I prefer dry yeast, rehydrated but I'm going to pay more attention and try some out in future batches to see if I can tell the difference.
At this point, I've not taken the time to wash and keep yeast but that might be something I'll do soon. I have some concerns about keeping them 'clean' but come the winter, I'll give that a try as well.

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Screwy, I'm curious if you can tell the difference between rehydrated 05 yeast and washed 05. I certainly get all the points made here and am not opposed to any of them, especially when trying to make a beer as close to the original as possible. But if I am planning on going the washed yeast route, is staring from an 05 ok or should I start with a liquid first?

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"Christ872" post=275557 said:

"mashani" post=275530 said:

IE if I was to order one from MoreBeer or Austin Home Brew, it would take 5 days to get here, anything they tossed in there to cool it would be gone after 24 hours and it would spend more time warm. Plus it ships across very hot places. Yuck.

I'll order from Midwest with an ice pack or two, but I still try to only order liquid yeast and have it shipped if it's 70s or lower.


+1 for Midwest's ice pack and they have several options to choose from in terms of ice packing.

In regard to Austin...be very careful as they are located in Texas...where it's basically tantamount to living on the sun in terms of heat. I would suspect that normal TX summer temps + the loving care afforded by UPS (sniker!) would kill anything...alive OR dead. Austin does have an option to put in a cold pack with their yeast...but that will only last so long.

Yeah, that's why I don't order them from Austin...

@Screwy, every smack pack I've gotten from Mr. Beer has inflated with no problems, and is typically 2 months old or less. So I do think they refrigerate them properly in house, otherwise I can't imagine they would have been ok at all.

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It's like the fly that thinks vinegar is the sweetest thing on earth because he's never tasted sugar. I won't diminish the extra effort that goes into harvesting and propagating your own yeast, quite the contrary in fact. I equate the effort of going to propagating your oun house strains of yeast with deciding to go all grain with all your extract recipes.

First you'll need to set aside the extra space required for the new equipment you'll be using like erlenmeyer flasks, mason jars, refrigerator space and if you're like me, a reliable stirplate and stirpars. Then it's a matter of fitting in the extra work steps into your brewday, which will be very different now since you'll be brewing your beer when the yeast is ready not just when you feel like it.

Hey I've brewed some really good beers using rehydrated yeast and just a single packet of Mr. Beer fromunda yeast too. Once I learned a bit about the benefits of healthy yeast cells, I started measuring the temperature of the wort before pouring in the fromunda yeast. Then I thought rehydrating dry yeast with warm water made sense since the cells absorbed water way better than they did wort with it's high sugar content.

No matter how you brew your beer it's yours to decide and enjoy, be like me keep imagining how much better your next beer could be if.. Before you know who knows you might get hooked on this hobby too.

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customer service said that sometimes it can take up to 7 dyas to fully activate - if the pack does swell over the cours of the next couple of days, would if be safe to use?

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"Eric" post=275656 said:

customer service said that sometimes it can take up to 7 dyas to fully activate - if the pack does swell over the cours of the next couple of days, would if be safe to use?

Yes... I've even used them without activating them with good results as long as the batch size was Mr. Beer sized and the gravity wasn't real high.

:)

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"BigPapaG" post=275658 said:

"Eric" post=275656 said:

customer service said that sometimes it can take up to 7 dyas to fully activate - if the pack does swell over the cours of the next couple of days, would if be safe to use?

Yes... I've even used them without activating them with good results as long as the batch size was Mr. Beer sized and the gravity wasn't real high.

:)

I've also used packs that didn't inflate... but I found they didn't because I didn't manage to bust the inner pouch properly, but still "lost" it. It seems if you are very lucky you can smash it to the point where it goes partially flat, but the nutrient stuff doesn't really come all the way out of it.

Still made beer.

FWIW, the last pack of 3787 I got from Mr. Beer inflated in 12 hours to the point of looking like a baloon. It was 2 months old.

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"mashani" post=275683 said:

"BigPapaG" post=275658 said:

"Eric" post=275656 said:

customer service said that sometimes it can take up to 7 dyas to fully activate - if the pack does swell over the cours of the next couple of days, would if be safe to use?

Yes... I've even used them without activating them with good results as long as the batch size was Mr. Beer sized and the gravity wasn't real high.

:)

I've also used packs that didn't inflate... but I found they didn't because I didn't manage to bust the inner pouch properly, but still "lost" it. It seems if you are very lucky you can smash it to the point where it goes partially flat, but the nutrient stuff doesn't really come all the way out of it.

Still made beer.

FWIW, the last pack of 3787 I got from Mr. Beer inflated in 12 hours to the point of looking like a baloon. It was 2 months old.

LOL! See video on how to activate...

:)

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I have 2 miscues with the wyeast. One I smacked and it never swelled up. However that yeast was 5 weeks old and that fermentation started quicker than any of the others usung liquid yeast. So as to the OP, use it. It is possible that the nutrient pack is shot to hell. My other miscue was the pack swelled so big it split the top and it started leaking. Again that fermentation was fine too.

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"Eric" post=275282 said:

I am in the process of making my first batch with liquid yeast - I activated it about 24 hours ago, but it has yet to expand/swell.

It may have expanded slightly, but not what I was expecting. Like I said, this is my first time using liquid yeast so I have not frame of reference.

The yeast is german ale and followed the direction as instructed on the package.

Is is ok to use?

What temperature is the yeast being kept at as you wait for it to swell?

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